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Developing DestiniesA Mayan Midwife and Town$
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Barbara Rogoff

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780195319903

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195319903.001.0001

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Meeting Chona and San Pedro

Meeting Chona and San Pedro

(p.37) 3 Meeting Chona and San Pedro
Developing Destinies

Barbara Rogoff (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

US researcher Barbara Rogoff became  family' with revered Mayan midwife Chona Pérez, beginning with Barbara's research interviews with Chona, the town's prominent expert on childrearing. The chapter traces the basis of their relationship and its context within the Mayan, Spanish, and Guatemalan history of the Mayan town of San Pedro, in the Highlands of Guatemala. Chona speaks the local Mayan language Tz'utujil, which is unrelated except through borrowed words to the national language, Spanish. Both continuities and changes are evident in the everyday occupations and practices of San Pedro women and men across Chona's lifetime and Barbara's decades of research in San Pedro. These descriptions of the course of San Pedro life are developed in describing the story that Chona created to explain how Barbara is her daughter.

Keywords:   Mayan, Spanish, Tz'utujil, language, history, weaving, tortillas, Guatemala

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